|By Brandon Watson||
|July 26, 2014 10:23 PM EDT||
I find myself on the eve of the known unknown. It’s been 9 years 1 month since I last completed an Ironman. I know what to expect. Yet there are so many unanswered questions. One question I can answer is how to play along at home. You can track me here. In keeping with my pre-race traditions, I have a long-ish post.
As with any undertaking of this magnitude, the nerves come into play. With old age comes wisdom, though it appears that the accompanying dish of calm and grace under pressure was not on the menu. Barring an injury on course, I will complete the distance. The question really comes down to the total time on course. The work has been done, deposits have been made. Tomorrow, athletes will withdraw with gusto, hoping that they have sufficient funds, and in some cases, overdraft protection.
To get to this point is a monumental effort. Not by the individual, standing along in the face of trials and challenges, but rather by an extended team of caring, loving and supportive people. This is the most selfish thing I do. It requires tremendous amounts of time, energy, and effort. Despite my best efforts to impact my schedule alone, the tax on my family, friends, and social network cannot be ignored. I want to take a minute to thank each of them, and tell them I will be carrying each of them with me on course tomorrow.
To my wife, Christy, you are an amazing life partner. There is no chance, NONE, that I would have this opportunity if it wasn’t for you. When I was nearly dead and broken, you did what needed to be done. You were patient with me, and then told me to get off my ass, quit my whining, and get back to racing. It takes a special kind of love to deliver that message. As a role model for our children, I could ask for none better. Your dedication to Oom Yung Doe excellence is a constant reminder to our children about the value of setting and achieving goals. Your dedication to your husband, and their father, is a shining example of what it is to give in a marriage. You give so that I may race. For all that you do, I love you to pieces.
Kid Bots, I hope that you find this message one day in the future and can understand how much you mean to me. You guys give me more joy in a day than I deserve. C, your intelligence and wit are without match, and your incredible curiosity tells me that you are likely to be a creative genius some day. T, I have little doubt that should you continue to want to be a professional life size Lego creator you will be one. I love how lost you can get in the craft of building your creations, and you honor me every time you share them with us. R, your personality is starting to shine through, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see you out on course going long some day. You’re fierce and strong, and don’t take shit from anyone. You guys keep me going when I get to the dark places in training and my racing. I look forward to seeing you all at the finish line.
Alex, there is no greater best friend a man could ask for. 20 years, each one a joy. While I am sad that you are off to new adventures on a new continent, you have served as a role model to me in more ways than you will ever know. There are few non-family moments of which I can think that I cherish more than our morning rides. I’m not sure when we will get another one in, geography being what it is and all, but that doesn’t matter. There are years ahead of us still. I am a much, much stronger rider because of chasing you.
Coach Ben, you have taken a broken down old man and whittled away to get something that, if you squint hard enough, resembles an athlete. My goal for this race is pretty simple. Go faster at 40 than I did at 30. It’s a much harder course, but I don’t really have any doubts about the results tomorrow. This has been a great journey. I hope to do honor to the team colors I will be flying tomorrow.
529Legion guys. Where would I be without you guys? More than anyone else, each of you has been witness to my transformation through sport, specifically riding. I love being in the saddle, whether it’s XC racing, all mountain riding, down-hilling, or being a roadie. I love you guys for the incredibly down to earth people that you are, how much support you give each other, and how fun you make it to be on two wheels. A couple of you have sent me mails ahead of this race. THANK YOU. Your words and encouragement will carry me through the race. As a group, you guys really are something special and to be treasured.
Harvard-Westlake Scramble Participants. It was a great joy being a part of the process, and helping raise funds for such a cool event for high schoolers. A special thank you goes to Rob Levin. You always believed in me, and I’m not sure why. Kids don’t forget the kindness of adults. Please don’t stop being you, and please keep nurturing and shaping those young lives. I look forward to finding other opportunities to connect my racing with the young’uns at HW.
Lastly, a message for those of you who find this posting and think “I could never do that.” Yes you can. 19 months ago I was 191 lbs and a complete out of shape mess. This race day sees me at 157lbs, 2 lbs under my target, and 2 lbs more than I weighed when I was in college. There are no hacks. No short cuts. Just dedication and hard work. You have to believe you can do this, and you will do it. You have to be willing to put in the work. No excuses, no complaining. I get it. It’s hard with family and work and pressures etc. I get it. The support crew has to be in place first. No question. Without my wife’s support, no way I do this. No way. I am extremely fortunate to have a coach put together a plan for me, and hold me accountable, but there are a myriad of these options available to anyone. Ben is awesome, and he will ultimately be the difference between me as an endurance event participant with a finisher medal, and me as an endurance racer at the pointy end of the field. If you do the work, you can complete these races, whatever the distance. I dare you to try. Hold yourself accountable, but please try. If you have even an ounce of desire to discover more about yourself and about what you can achieve, *try*. Or Tri. That’s the route I went. Just get off the couch.
My cousin had an extremely scary cancer run in. It was a wake up call to him about his health and lifestyle choices. His transformation has been nothing short of astounding, and he inspires me. He put in the work. He looks and sounds so much healthier for it. It’s great to see his progress shared so publicly on Strava. He didn’t look for a shortcut. He looked for a result. The power to dream is such a beautiful gift. One of my dreams is to continue to improve in this sport, see the world via race venues, and continue meeting amazing people who share a passion and love for this sport. Whatever your dream, don’t wait. Nine years and almost to the day my father passed away. He never saw me race. These things are so much more special when you can share them with loved ones. Find your dream, share it with your loved ones, and, to quote Lt. Daniels from The Wire, “do the work.”
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Oct. 2, 2014 12:15 PM EDT Reads: 3,221
Noted IoT expert and researcher Joseph di Paolantonio (pictured below) has joined the @ThingsExpo faculty. Joseph, who describes himself as an “Independent Thinker” from DataArchon, will speak on the topic of “Smart Grids & Managing Big Utilities.” Over his career, Joseph di Paolantonio has worked in the energy, renewables, aerospace, telecommunications, and information technology industries. His expertise is in data analysis, system engineering, Bayesian statistics, data warehouses, business intelligence, data mining, predictive methods, and very large databases (VLDB). Prior to DataArcho...
Oct. 2, 2014 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,169
Cultural, regulatory, environmental, political and economic (CREPE) conditions over the past decade are creating cross-industry solution spaces that require processes and technologies from both the Internet of Things (IoT), and Data Management and Analytics (DMA). These solution spaces are evolving into Sensor Analytics Ecosystems (SAE) that represent significant new opportunities for organizations of all types. Public Utilities throughout the world, providing electricity, natural gas and water, are pursuing SmartGrid initiatives that represent one of the more mature examples of SAE. We have s...
Oct. 2, 2014 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,206
The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to require a new way of thinking and of developing software for speed, security and innovation. This requires IT leaders to balance business as usual while anticipating for the next market and technology trends. Cloud provides the right IT asset portfolio to help today’s IT leaders manage the old and prepare for the new. Today the cloud conversation is evolving from private and public to hybrid. This session will provide use cases and insights to reinforce the value of the network in helping organizations to maximize their company’s cloud experience.
Oct. 2, 2014 08:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,384
Disruptive macro trends in technology are impacting and dramatically changing the "art of the possible" relative to supply chain management practices through the innovative use of IoT, cloud, machine learning and Big Data to enable connected ecosystems of engagement. Enterprise informatics can now move beyond point solutions that merely monitor the past and implement integrated enterprise fabrics that enable end-to-end supply chain visibility to improve customer service delivery and optimize supplier management. Learn about enterprise architecture strategies for designing connected systems tha...
Oct. 2, 2014 08:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,235
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, will discuss the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. The presentation will also discuss how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics to discuss are barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what the future may hold.
Oct. 1, 2014 10:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,875
Whether you're a startup or a 100 year old enterprise, the Internet of Things offers a variety of new capabilities for your business. IoT style solutions can help you get closer your customers, launch new product lines and take over an industry. Some companies are dipping their toes in, but many have already taken the plunge, all while dramatic new capabilities continue to emerge. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Reid Carlberg, Senior Director, Developer Evangelism at salesforce.com, to discuss real-world use cases, patterns and opportunities you can harness today.
Oct. 1, 2014 08:30 PM EDT Reads: 2,253
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices – computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors – connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo in Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be!
Oct. 1, 2014 05:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,447
Software AG helps organizations transform into Digital Enterprises, so they can differentiate from competitors and better engage customers, partners and employees. Using the Software AG Suite, companies can close the gap between business and IT to create digital systems of differentiation that drive front-line agility. We offer four on-ramps to the Digital Enterprise: alignment through collaborative process analysis; transformation through portfolio management; agility through process automation and integration; and visibility through intelligent business operations and big data.
Sep. 30, 2014 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,635
There will be 50 billion Internet connected devices by 2020. Today, every manufacturer has a propriety protocol and an app. How do we securely integrate these "things" into our lives and businesses in a way that we can easily control and manage? Even better, how do we integrate these "things" so that they control and manage each other so our lives become more convenient or our businesses become more profitable and/or safe? We have heard that the best interface is no interface. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Co-Founder & CTO at Octoblu, Inc., will discuss how thes...
Sep. 29, 2014 06:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,944
Last week, while in San Francisco, I used the Uber app and service four times. All four experiences were great, although one of the drivers stopped for 30 seconds and then left as I was walking up to the car. He must have realized I was a blogger. None the less, the next car was just a minute away and I suffered no pain. In this article, my colleague, Ved Sen, Global Head, Advisory Services Social, Mobile and Sensors at Cognizant shares his experiences and insights.
Sep. 28, 2014 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,587
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) ir...
Sep. 27, 2014 11:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,965
Can call centers hang up the phones for good? Intuitive Solutions did. WebRTC enabled this contact center provider to eliminate antiquated telephony and desktop phone infrastructure with a pure web-based solution, allowing them to expand beyond brick-and-mortar confines to a home-based agent model. It also ensured scalability and better service for customers, including MUY! Companies, one of the country's largest franchise restaurant companies with 232 Pizza Hut locations. This is one example of WebRTC adoption today, but the potential is limitless when powered by IoT. Attendees will learn rea...
Sep. 27, 2014 10:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,876
From telemedicine to smart cars, digital homes and industrial monitoring, the explosive growth of IoT has created exciting new business opportunities for real time calls and messaging. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Ivelin Ivanov, CEO and Co-Founder of Telestax, will share some of the new revenue sources that IoT created for Restcomm – the open source telephony platform from Telestax. Ivelin Ivanov is a technology entrepreneur who founded Mobicents, an Open Source VoIP Platform, to help create, deploy, and manage applications integrating voice, video and data. He is the co-founder ...
Sep. 27, 2014 10:30 PM EDT Reads: 2,340
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to create new business models as significant as those that were inspired by the Internet and the smartphone 20 and 10 years ago. What business, social and practical implications will this phenomenon bring? That's the subject of "Monetizing the Internet of Things: Perspectives from the Front Lines," an e-book released today and available free of charge from Aria Systems, the leading innovator in recurring revenue management.
Sep. 27, 2014 09:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,560
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges.
Sep. 27, 2014 08:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,447
There’s Big Data, then there’s really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at 6th Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, to discuss how IoT, Big Data and deployments are processing massive data volumes from wearables, utilities and other mach...
Sep. 27, 2014 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,108
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Erik Lagerway, Co-founder of Hookflash, will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone and voice s...
Sep. 26, 2014 11:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,636
While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehe...
Sep. 26, 2014 10:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,552
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, will discuss single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example...
Sep. 26, 2014 07:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,363